Jubilation Novel and Obama in New Orleans

Jubilation Novel and Obama in New Orleans

Leaving New Orleans

In New Orleans working on a novel that I had set aside, and now coming back to it  The novel is a memoir of my grandmother an indentured Irish servant who comes from the West of Ireland and meets an old black ex-slave woman by the name of Miss Sally Jubilation.  Over the next seven years my grandmother Miss Rosa works with her and learns to be a woman of worth and dignity. Miss Sally is extraordinary, sold as a slave at the age of thirteen, had five children, four who died, and one who survives in Angola Prison. Miss Sally is most extraordinary, a self taught woman, a vodun, and a healer. She is the center of her community by Jubilation Square, if there is someone who needs help or healing, Miss Sally is there… or part of the invisible net of “knowing” that she spun… As my grandmother wrote in her diary, “Very little seemed to escape Miss Sally’s attention, she seemed to be aware of the task in front of her, but she was aware of all of life around her… a sick child needing help down the road, a family struggling with enough food… Miss Sally was able to help.   She was the spider spinning a web of healing and love.”

Here as I am back in Congo Square/ Jubilation square I am immersed in the whole narrative of the slave culture of New Orleans, and the thousands of threads of this story. Here in Congo Square slaves were once sold, but this was also a sacred ground for the Houmas indians, and in the early 1800’s to the mid 1800’s slaves would dance and celebrate in the park on Sunday afternoons.

I am watching the US elections and watching the most extraordinary of things… President Barrack Obama a two term Black president. Born of a black father and a white mother, who would have given much hope for a child like that in years past, but the extraordinary thing is that in America this can happen.

Being in New Orleans and the tremendous struggle of civil rights for African Americans is very prominent.

Perhaps, some of that voodoo magic of New Orleans slipped into the national conscience. I hope President Barack does some of that voodoo magic for world peace.

This novel is very important to me and difficult to write at times. It is part of the longer story I am trying to articulate… the courage it takes to be human, the courage to love, and the transformation that can happen in our lives. Miss Sally had arisen from an impoverished slave girl to rise to be a woman whom people loved and respected.  It is odd that I am working on my new solo performance “Witness to Genocide,” and that had been presented. This is the story of my Jewish side of the family and our extended family’s journey out of Europe, and it is the story that asks, “How is there a viable future for the children of Israel and Palestine?”

Also, the new drawings and art work series, is “SILENCE IS COMPLICITY.”  Though each phase of this is unique, it is all about people finding their courage to speak their truth.

Yes, speak your truth


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